Bewley’s to sell only Fairtrade coffee and launches compostable pods

Coffee drives 25 per cent increase in sales of Fairtrade goods in Ireland

Sales of Fairtrade products in Ireland grew by 25 per cent in 2017, with consumer spending on the goods, which are sourced from producers who work in partnership with workers, rising from €273 million to €342 million.

Fairtrade Fortnight, an awareness raising initiative, was launched on Monday morning at a business briefing in Dublin attended by 30 chief executives from across the global Fairtrade network. It runs from February 26th to March 11th.

Coffee was the biggest Fairtrade growth area in Ireland last year, with an increase of 42 per cent in sales volume and 48 per cent in value. Fairtrade product sales in Ireland also include cocoa, bananas and cut flowers, with Aldi selling more than 2.6 million Fairtrade roses last year in its 130 stores in this country.

Bewley’s converted its coffee sales to 100 per cent Fairtrade-sourced beans last year, while Insomnia’s volume of Fairtrade coffee rose by 49 per cent, and at Starbucks in Ireland it was up by 39 per cent.

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Jason Doyle, managing director of Bewley's Foodservice Ireland, said: "We were very proud to bring the first Irish Fairtrade produce to market in 1997. Two years ago, during Fairtrade Fortnight, we made the commitment to go 100 per cent Fairtrade and we are delighted to say we achieved that in 2017."

Bewley’s also recently launched a range of fully compostable coffee pods. The range uses Fairtrade certified coffee and is available in four varieties – two blends and two single origins. Coffee capsule sales are growing at almost 15 per cent year-on-year, according to the company.

As part of the Fairtrade Fortnight programme, Roberto Arturo Lopez, who works in the coffee industry in Honduras, and Juliet Arku-Mensah, who is employed on a banana plantation in Ghana, are visiting Ireland for series of promotional events.

Lopez, who is sustainability programme manager at a Fairtrade coffee co-operative that supplies Bewley’s, will take part in a panel discussion on “Hot Coffee: From disposable cups to disposable lives”, at the Teachers’ Club, Parnell Square, Dublin 1, at 7pm on Wednesday, February 28th.

He will also be in Insomnia, Chatham Street, Dublin 2, on Thursday, March 1st (9-11am), for a “Meet the farmer behind your coffee” morning.

Arku-Mensah, who is Fairtrade officer at a banana plantation that supplies Marks & Spencer, will take part in a Bake-Off event with Catherine Leyden in the heritage centre in Clondalkin, Dublin 22, on Thursday, March 1st at 5pm.

She will also take part in a Fairtrade Community Coffee Morning on Monday, March 5th at the Rediscovery Centre, Ballymun, Dublin 9, at 10.30am.

All events are free to attend and pre-booking is not required.

Ireland currently has 51 officially recognised Fairtrade towns and cities, and a further 23 seeking Fairtrade status. There are also Fairtrade schools, colleges, workplaces and festivals.

For more, see fairtrade.ie/get-involved/fairtrade-fortnight.